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What Digital Piano Should I Get? #2936540 01/21/20 12:54 AM
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James Padgett Offline OP
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I’ve read that the Yamaha P515 has a stiff key and then some people say that Kawai has too soft of a key...what do I opt toward when your budget is $2000 and you want the best grand piano like experience you can possibly get?

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Re: What Digital Piano Should I Get? [Re: James Padgett] #2936541 01/21/20 12:56 AM
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Kawai James Offline
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Hello James,

My advice would be to play everything that is available to you and within your budget, then chose the instrument that brings you the most musical enjoyment.

Best of luck!

Cheers,
James
x


Employed by Kawai Japan, however the opinions I express are my own.
Nord Electro 3 & occasional rare groove player.

"I agree that the User Manual is very good." - arc7urus, March 2019
Re: What Digital Piano Should I Get? [Re: Kawai James] #2936543 01/21/20 01:15 AM
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James Padgett Offline OP
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Thank you James.

I have been to every music store near me and none have anything with good action. I never really liked the GHS action, and that’s the best action around my area. I want to play classical and some smooth soft music on a new piano and I don’t know which brand would be better for be over the others. Could you give me some of your preferences and your recommendations?

Re: What Digital Piano Should I Get? [Re: James Padgett] #2936559 01/21/20 03:46 AM
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QuasiUnaFantasia Offline
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I should probably reply, since I play classical and some smooth soft music. smile

When I went DP shopping in 2018 I tried Yamaha, Kawai, and Roland (and various acoustics that, for space and monetary reasons, I was definitely not going to buy). In terms of action, I generally preferred the Roland's to the Kawai's, and the Kawai's to the Yamaha's, although the less expensive Yamaha's came across as rather ok (the expensive Clavinova's, on the other hand, were weird and very unpleasant). All Roland's felt good, all Kawai's felt ok but a bit on the mushy side (probably more psychological than actual).

I will happily resound the eternal chorus from this forum "there is no substitute for trying it yourself". There really isn't.


Roland FP-30, Roland E-28
Pianoteq 6.5 (Bechstein DG, Grotrian, Steinway D, K2), Garritan CFX Lite, Production Voices Estate Grand
Re: What Digital Piano Should I Get? [Re: James Padgett] #2936567 01/21/20 04:30 AM
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akc42 Offline
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And to add my voice - I originally bought a DP based on what I thought was value for money at the lowish end of the market, but didn't give much thought to the action. Within 6 weeks I had concluded I had made a mistake and went back and auditioned slightly higher level pianos. I preferred the Kawai action to everything else, so bought that. Fortunately (since it was the same retailer) I good a good upgrade deal.

Try Roland, Yamaha and Kawai - ignore the marketing speak with different names - choose the one you like the most.

Re: What Digital Piano Should I Get? [Re: James Padgett] #2936569 01/21/20 04:43 AM
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CyberGene Offline
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Wait a little for CA79, sounds like a great piano where they fixed almost everything people complained about in CA78.


My YouTube, My Soundcloud
Currently: Yamaha N1X, DIY hybrid controller -> Garritan CFX
Previously: NU1X, ES7, MP6, CA63, RD-700SX, CDP-100, FP-5, P90, SP-200
Re: What Digital Piano Should I Get? [Re: James Padgett] #2936597 01/21/20 06:50 AM
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MacMacMac Offline
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What stores have you visited?
Originally Posted by James Padgett
I have been to every music store near me and none have anything with good action. I never really liked the GHS action, and that’s the best action around my area.
I don't like the GHS, either. And if the GHS is the best action you found there then I'm guessing you were at Guitar Center or similar? You'll only find the low-end pianos there.

Try a proper piano shop. With few exceptions those are the only ones that stock the better pianos.

BTW, where are you located?

Re: What Digital Piano Should I Get? [Re: James Padgett] #2936600 01/21/20 07:01 AM
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sleutelbos Offline
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The GHS is the cheapest Yamaha action. Yamaha, Roland and Kawai all have (far) better offerings.

Re: What Digital Piano Should I Get? [Re: James Padgett] #2936602 01/21/20 07:24 AM
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dmd Offline
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With your budget (2000), I would suggest you try out the Kawai ES8.

That is the one that ended my search for "better".


Don

Kawai MP11SE, Focal Professional CMS 40 near-field monitors, Yamaha HS8S Powered Subwoofer, SennHeiser HD 559 Headphones, Pianoteq and numerous other VSTs (Seldom Used)
Re: What Digital Piano Should I Get? [Re: James Padgett] #2936617 01/21/20 08:37 AM
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At your price point, you want to try the Yamaha P515, the Kawai ES8, and the Roland F90. All of them are fine pianos, and all of them have fans who like them best. So, get the one you like.

That is, if you want a stage piano with speakers. If you want a console piano, that’s a whole different ball game. But you’ll want to try those same manufacturers.


Rodney Sauer
Kawai KG-2E • Kawai ES8
Re: What Digital Piano Should I Get? [Re: James Padgett] #2936659 01/21/20 10:43 AM
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Mr Moto Offline
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Originally Posted by James Padgett
I’ve read that the Yamaha P515 has a stiff key and then some people say that Kawai has too soft of a key...what do I opt toward when your budget is $2000 and you want the best grand piano like experience you can possibly get?

Hi James,
I asked a similar $2000 question on 5 Jan 2020 ('Choosing a digital piano') and you might be able to find the post to see the excellent advice I received from the forum members. They were so helpful. I was convinced we wanted a console until Charles Cohen's question nudged us to challenge our assumptions. We delayed our purchase until after the NAMM (Check Larry Fine's great posts) to see if anything spectacular would emerge from that trade show. Looks like nothing new in the specific area we are considering was released. During our endless search, we also discovered in addition to the feel is the sound of each piano at different volume levels. They are very different. Like feel, the differences are often subtle. Recommend you go to a locally owned shop early in the day so you can listen to the pianos without a bunch of customer background noise. Tough to concentrate when some clod is pounding 'Wipeout' on the drums in the next room! These are thoughts from a complete newbie without a piano so take it for what it is worth. smile By the way, we like the FP-90 but are going back to the music store to make sure. Oh, and we will purchase locally. The piano stores are so kind to share their time, talent and patience so they deserve the sale.

Last edited by Mr Moto; 01/21/20 10:47 AM.
Re: What Digital Piano Should I Get? [Re: James Padgett] #2936697 01/21/20 11:40 AM
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djvu10 Offline
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MacMacMac asked you an important question: where are you located?
This information is not so important when you're buying a ukelele or a guitar but very important when you're buying a piano.

Re: What Digital Piano Should I Get? [Re: James Padgett] #2936699 01/21/20 11:43 AM
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Kawai has too soft an action? That's not accurate. Digital piano actions are sluggish and stiff when compared to a real concert piano. Real concert pianos have lighter and faster actions than all of these digitals you are looking at. After owning and testing every digital brand, and as a pro, I only favor the Kawai digital actions for realism. And its the most important factor in my life.


Professional | 1966 Mason & Hamlin | Kawai ES110 | Mojo 61 |
Re: What Digital Piano Should I Get? [Re: James Padgett] #2936766 01/21/20 02:39 PM
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Xenolith Offline
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If your looking for the best action, it might be worth spending a small amount extra, and getting the kawai CA48, as it's the cheapest piano with kawais grand feel action. It's possible to probably convince your seller (forgot the actual term) to get it under $2000

Re: What Digital Piano Should I Get? [Re: James Padgett] #2936806 01/21/20 04:58 PM
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rio197 Offline
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Originally Posted by James Padgett
I’ve read that the Yamaha P515 has a stiff key and then some people say that Kawai has too soft of a key...what do I opt toward when your budget is $2000 and you want the best grand piano like experience you can possibly get?


Stiff or not, whether it's a Yamaha or Kawai, I recommend testing them out yourself. It's your own fingers and feel, and you don't want to be stuck with or returning to the store a piano you don't like.

Maybe you can list here the models that are available in your area?


--
Roland FP-30, Yamaha CP73, Nektar Impact LX88+ on Cantabile
Previously: Yamaha P-115 (two years)
Re: What Digital Piano Should I Get? [Re: James Padgett] #2936819 01/21/20 05:30 PM
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djvu10 Offline
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CyberGene, the CA79 may be just a bit higher than the OP's $2000 budget.
I'm ordering 3 MP11se DPs at $2149 plus CA sales tax each. I know it's a little over the OP's budget but I still think the MP11se has a better action than anything else in this price range.

Re: What Digital Piano Should I Get? [Re: ColoRodney] #2936848 01/21/20 06:23 PM
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Charles Cohen Offline
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Originally Posted by ColoRodney
At your price point, you want to try the Yamaha P515, the Kawai ES8, and the Roland F90. All of them are fine pianos, and all of them have fans who like them best. So, get the one you like.

That is, if you want a stage piano with speakers. If you want a console piano, that’s a whole different ball game. But you’ll want to try those same manufacturers.


+1. (The Roland is the FP90, not the F90). They're all good, but "best" is a matter of personal choice.

I think the Kawai MP11Se is above your budget, and it needs external amps and speakers (= "powered monitors") if you want to play it without headphones. So add anywhere from $400 to $1,000 for those (or set up a hi-fi system that can handle "live piano" volumes and frequency range).


. Charles
---------------------------
PX-350 / microKorg XL+ / Pianoteq / Lounge Lizard / EV ZXA1 speaker
Re: What Digital Piano Should I Get? [Re: James Padgett] #2937362 01/23/20 12:11 AM
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djvu10 Offline
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Most pianists in here would recommend getting the best piano action you can afford. You can always improve the sound by using VST or buying better speakers but buying another piano would be the only way to improve the action.


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